BuzzFeed senior technology writer Charlie Warzel acknowledged that he sent emails to Twitter enquiring about tweets from Infowars founder Alex Jones ahead of the social media company’s decision to ban Jones from its platform.
“I reached out to twitter — independently of anyone — to inquire about one of yesterday’s tweets from [Alex Jones]” Warzel said on Twitter.
After a short delay, Twitter told Warzel, along with other establishment media (but no conservative sources), that it would ban Jones and InfoWars permanently. Twitter’s justification? The fact that Jones had insulted a CNN reporter.
Reaching out to social media companies asking them to comment on allegedly offensive content on their platforms is a tried-and-tested method for establishment media reporters seeking to censor their competitors.
CNN repeatedly reached out to social companies ahead of the rapid-fire bans of Alex Jones on web platforms, including YouTube, Apple podcasts and Facebook, relentlessly running articles on the “controversy” of social media platforms hosting Jones until he was banned.
When Twitter (initially) failed to follow suit, they faced days of negative media attention, along with hostile questions from Democrat politicians who have repeatedly criticized social media companies for hosting alleged “conspiracy theorists” on their platforms.
The method usually follows this pattern:
- Identify content that might make a left-wing Bay Area tech employee feel guilty or offended.
- Send it to said Bay Area tech employees.
- Couple it with intense coverage on their failure to take action (apparently this is newsworthy!)
- Throw in a few outraged op-eds demanding platforms “take responsibility” for billions of pieces of content on their platforms.
- Wait for them to realize that they value the approval of Democrats and the establishment press over respecting the choices of their users.
Getting Jones banned isn’t enough for the mainstream media, of course. ABC News called the decision to ban the radio host a “blip in a sea of abuse,” claiming “it has a long way to go.”